Vatican City's daily newspaper L'Osservatore Romano praised the visual spectacle of the $1 billion blockbuster, but took issue with the film's storyline.
The paper wrote: "It has a great deal of enchanting, stunning technology, but few genuine or human emotions. Its significance is in its visual impact rather than in the story, and in its messages, despite the fact that they are hardly new.
"Cameron, concentrating on the creation of the fantasy world of Pandora, chooses a bland approach. He tells the story without any profound exploration."
Vatican Radio were also critical of Avatar, accusing it of worshipping nature by having "a wink towards the pseudo-doctrines which have made ecology the religion of the millennium".
Last year the Vatican called Da Vinci Code sequel Angels & Demons "harmless entertainment".